Tuesday, November 16, 2010

St. Lucy - St. Patrick, Kent Avenue

Please read this decree concerning the merger of this parish into that of Mary of Nazareth, 41 Adelphi Street, effective January 31, 2011. The name of the parish is Mary of Nazareth, but the name of the church at 41 Adelphi Street is Sacred Heart. It is about a mile west of St. Patrick's.

Note the 1843 date on the sign, ten years before the creation of the diocese of Brooklyn. According to John Sharp in "History of the Diocese of Brooklyn," vol. 1, p. 113, Catholics in this neighborhood "on the Newtown Road" (Flushing Avenue) purchased a Methodist church near what is now the intersection of Kent and Willoughby Avenues, and named their church St. Mary's. Bishop Hughes of New York sent them a pastor. About 1849, the parish was renamed St. Patrick's. The church shown below was dedicated by Bishop Loughlin of Brooklyn in 1856, three years after the diocese was created.

At the corner of Willoughby and Kent Avenue stands this church built in 1856 by the famous architect Patrick Charles Keely. My photos date from March, 2005. However, please also see this link.
In the block adjacent to the left side of the church (that is, going downtown on Willoughby Avenue) is the historic property of the convent and orphanage of the Sisters of Mercy. The place is far more than historic; it is was important to many families for more than a century. A New York Times article is linked here.



  1. i recently learned that my great grandfather was a sexton here. well, that's what i'm deducing from his naturalization papers. they listed his job as sexton & his 2 witnesses were priests w/ 802 kent ave as their address: anthony de laura & anthony de liberty. i would like to try & find out about his time there. if anyone has any records of a philip (filippo) gullo from the 1920's or early '30's, i would love to hear from you! stephanie morris auntfeffie13@yahoo.com

  2. The Italian Catholics built a national church in honor of St Lucy located at 802 Kent Avenue (between Park Avenue & Little Nassau St.) That church structure still exists, but the Catholic community of St Lucy merged with the older Catholic Church of St. Patrick about 1980 because there were few Catholics living in the area.